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What is the advantage to having a "legal" separation as opposed to the couple simply living separately?

Stone Mountain, GA |

Would a legal separation provide safeguards to protect both parties from debts incurred by the other prior to divorce?

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Attorney answers 5

Best Answer

Each state is different, which is why it's important to obtain information from an attorney who is licensed in Georgia. In Georgia, there isn't a status called "legally separated." However, you can file for separate maintenance. Many issues can be resolved in that process, including who is responsible for certain bills, and who will remain in the residence. If the spouse fails to pay a bill he or she is ordered to pay, the other spouse can seek court intervention to force payment.

You should seek a consultation with counsel to determine if a separate maintenance proceeding is appropriate for you.

I am available to discuss the matter with you in my Dekalb County office.

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Decatur, GA 30030

Licensed in Georgia and Maryland


A legal separation also divides property and handles support and custody.

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It allows the court the leeway to ensure both parties are not incapable of supporting themselves. A legal separation puts others on notice that the parties are acting separately.


Georgia does not have "legal separation" so your question does not apply in Georgia.

We do have something called separate maintenance, which generally doubles your legal fees as you sort out support in one case and then do it all over again in a divorce.

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As many of my colleagues have stated, Georgia does not have legal separation. We have an action for separate maintenance which provides for duties and responsibilities in the period of separation. It can be a very expensive process if you subsequently file for divorce, so definitely consult with an attorney to see which course of action you should take.

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